Pearse O’Donohue, the European Commission’s director of Future Networks, stressed 5G is central to many of the commission’s economic and social development policies, and is pushing for light-touch regulation to support the rapidly rollout of 5G networks.

He pointed to its Digital Single Market policy in which its Gigabit Society goals can only be successful if 5G by is rolled out in all parts of the European Union by 2025.

Speaking at the GTI Summit on Tuesday, he said the regulator understands Europe requires a regulatory regime that is light, flexible and supportive of the development of 5G.

The Commission is focused on a number of areas, but near the top of the list is Identifying radio spectrum required to allow 5G to be quickly tested and developed, give confidence to device makers and create a clear framework for licensing to be carried out.

“Through our proposals, we are seeking to have greater coordination towards spectrum licensing to speed it up and harmonise traditional licensing so operators know exactly what their footprint can be on specific bands across the EU. We want to make it easier for 5G networks to be rolled out… we know local planning laws do cause significant delays in the deployment of new technologies,” he said.

It is also pushing for global standards to be worked out, not just to drive forward ultra-fast broadband, but also complete those that identify the business use cases for industrial, social and vertical applications that drive investment in 5G and bring the benefits of the new radio technology not only to the European economy but the world economy.